Obama Campaign Copies Gingrich -- Decries Then Embraces Super-PACs
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What Obama could do as president is issue an executive order requiring federal contractors, which include some of the biggest corporations in America, to disclose political donations in federal campaigns. And he might even have the IRS take a closer look at a pending application from Rove’s 501c4—Crossroads GPS—concerning its non-profit status. The Washington Post reported this week that it is operating as a non-profit without a federal license to do so, including buying millions of dollars in anti-Obama TV ads.
As candidate Obama, he could do something else. In 2008, it was Obama who had the big money momentum behind him, raising millions from small donors because he genuinely excited ordinary people with his candidacy. He could recall what excited people so much and campaign as a populist.
But now he will do what most politicians do after decrying tactics they later embrace. He will hope that raising big money from a selected few will ensure his re-election. And the progressive political reform community will hold its breath, hoping that if he is re-elected, he will finally get behind some meaningful reform.
Steven Rosenfeld covers democracy issues for AlterNet and is the author of "Count My Vote: A Citizen's Guide to Voting" (AlterNet Books, 2008).